William Boissevain

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William 'Wim' Boissevain (born 23 July 1927) is an Australian painter of Dutch extraction born Willem Geoffrey Boissevain in New York, son of Gideon Walrave 'Gi' Boissevain who was in the Dutch diplomatic service.[1]

He studied at the Central School of Arts and Crafts, London and the École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts, Paris.

He arrived in Australia in 1947, became naturalised in 1949,[2] and has established a studio at Glen Forrest in the Darling Range near Perth.

From 1951 to 1955 he taught drawing and French at Wesley College, Perth,[3] later at Perth Technical College.

His portrait of the art dealer and benefactor Claude Hotchin was an entry in the 1957 Archibald Prize.[4]

Since 1964 he has held exhibitions in many major galleries in Perth (commencing with the Skinner Gallery[5]) and Sydney.[6] His paintings are avidly sought by collectors.

His first wife Rhoda Elsie Boissevain (born 27 July 1918), also a fine portrait painter, was runner-up in the Rubinstein Prize for portraiture 1960. She also taught at Perth Technical College in the 1960s.[7] The National Library of Australia has her 1955? portrait of Katharine Susannah Prichard.[8]


  • Rubinstein Prize for portraiture 1956
  • Claude Hotchin Art Prize, 1959
  • Perth Prize for Drawing International, Perth, Western Australia, 1971
  • He was awarded an Order of the British Empire (OBE) in 1978 for his services to the advancement of art.[9]


  • Boissevain, William; Fry, Gavin (1998), William Boissevain : a passion for colour, Beagle Press, ISBN 978-0-947349-22-6 
  • Boissevain, William; Fry, Gavin (2001), William Boissevain : a passion for colour (2nd ed.), Beagle Press, ISBN 978-0-947349-22-6 
  • Addenbrooke, Maureen (illustrations by Wim Boissevain) Killing Cats and Karma Artlook Books Perth, W.A. 1983 ISBN 0-86445-042-7



  1. ^ "William Boissevain in stock at Art Nomad". Artnomad.com.au. Retrieved 19 August 2010. 
  2. ^ http://www.wagnerartgallery.com.au/Wagner_Biography-William_Boissevain.doc
  3. ^ "Masters and apprentices Art Exhibition 2009". Wesley.wa.edu.au. Retrieved 19 August 2010. 
  4. ^ "It seems to me". The Australian Women's Weekly. National Library of Australia. 6 February 1957. p. 24. Retrieved 21 January 2013. 
  5. ^ "William Boissevain, paintings for sale at Savill Galleries, 156 Hargrave Street, Paddington, Sydney. Tel: +61 2 9327 8311". Savill.com.au. Retrieved 19 August 2010. 
  6. ^ "Perth Art Gallery – Linton & Kay". Lintonandkay.com.au. Retrieved 19 August 2010. 
  7. ^ Elizabeth Law. "RRA Artist ::Elizabeth Law". Rra.net.au. Retrieved 19 August 2010. 
  8. ^ http://catalogue.nla.gov.au/Record/346345
  9. ^ "It's an Honour" website


McCulloch, Alan Encyclopedia of Australian Art Hutchinson of London 1968